1.) The Boston Red Sox will have three frontrunners for the AL Cy Young
The Red Sox arguably have the best starting 3 in baseball with Chris Sale, David Price, and Rick Porcello, and there it is likely these three pitchers will finish in the top 5 of Cy Young voting. Chris Sale finished his 2017 campaign with 32 starts and going 117-8 with most of his losses happening in the second half of the year. His ERA was an astounding 2.90 and he amounted 308 strikeouts with opponents hitting just .208 against him. If Chris Sale can come close to these numbers again, he will easily be in the Cy Young conversation just as he was this past season.
David Price came off of a very interesting season including drama with the media that was followed up with an injury that sidelined Jim for the majority of the season. Price’s high point of the year was easily his memorial Postseason relief performances where he pitched 6.2 innings, surrenders only 5 hits, threw 6 strikeouts, and allowed no runs. If Price can continue off his hot Postseason which kept the Red Sox alive for an extra game, you can expect David Price to be the front-runner for the AL Cy Young.
Rick Porcello was quite the wild card this past year when he was 11-17 with a 4.65 ERA. He never could find that mode that he was in during his 2016 Cy Young run just barely beating out Justin Verlander. I really expect Porcello to bounce back and round out the Red Sox Cy Young monopoly.
2.) Giancarlo Stanton will break the Single-Season Homerun Record
Look, as a Sox fan, there is nothing I want to see less than this, but it’s a very real possibility. Giancarlo was able to hit 59 homers this past season over 692 plate appearances, but with Stanton being in Yankee Stadium where the Right and Left field corner are nearly 30 feet shorter, a jump of only 14 seems very doable. The one issue with this is how much playing time Stanton will get. If the Yankees are smart, they won’t play their newest addition 159 games like the Marlins did in 2017, so it will be significantly more difficult with fewer plate appearances. Stanton will have to cut down on the strikeouts – of which he had 163 – if he wants to set a new record this season.
3.) Josh Donaldson will be traded back to the Athletics
With Josh Donaldson’s contract expiring, it is likely the Blue Jays will look to deal him before the All-Star Break, and why not back to the A’s. The Athletics only have one third-baseman on the roster in Matt Chapman, they are in desperate need of a legitimate player at the hot corner. The Blue Jays likely will seek some value, but won’t demand too much if they don’t plan on resigning him this upcoming offseason. The A’s could give up Marcus Semien to a shortstop lacking Blue Jays which would benefit both teams greatly.
4.) The Atlanta Braves will finish with the worst record in MLB history
In 1916, the Philadelphia Athletics finished with only 36 wins, and the Atlanta Braves may just top this. With only one legitimate starter in Julio Tehran and no consistent hitting outside of Freddie Freeman when healthy and Nick Markakis, the Braves have no pieces to use this season. In classic Atlanta sports fashion, halfway through the first half of the season, they will realize their year is already lost. More than likely trade away Tehran and maybe even Freeman for more prospects to put in their farm system everyone has been talking about since 2010. No matter how you look at this season, the Braves have no legitimate chance to do anything, and their only accomplishment may just be winning under 36 games.
5.) Your 2018 World Series Champions…
The Colorado Rockies will be your World Series Champions. The Rockies have one true weak point, and it is their starting rotation. If they could address this issue by trading for one or two quality starters, there is no doubt this team can win it all. An offense led by Nolan Arenado that is backed up by: Charlie Blackmon, Carlos Gonzalez, Ian Desmond and Trevor Story is scary. If Story and Desmond can keep a consistent bat going this season, they will be an offensive power house out west.
Well, there you have it, 5 predictions for the 2018 MLB Season. Looking forward to watching this season to see if any of these predictions come to be, and if not just having fun watching the best sport on the planet.